Guest Post by: Monica Esposito

Lush cosmetics and the Body Shop may be birds of a feather, but not when it comes to social media strategy. Lush is ruling social media engagement while the Body Shop lags behind. We took a deep dive into their Facebook pages to find out why.

Lush and The Body Shop are alike in many ways. Both have a similar product offering (soaps, creams and cosmetics); both stick to the same philosophy of ethical sourcing, with no testing on animals and environmentally-friendly production techniques. And while Body Shop may trump Lush in terms of size and scale, it doesn’t hold a candle to Lush’s level of social media engagement.

We took an in-depth look at the social media marketing strategy of these two brands. Our investigation revealed two very different approaches to engagement, and two very different results in terms of customer interaction.

Where the Body Shop Facebook page adopts a more ‘corporate’ tone of engagement, with announcements of special offers and posts by consultants organising or promoting Body Shop events, the Lush Facebook approach is more personal and conversational. Lush also has a separate Facebook group, Lush Times, where users can post pictures of them using the products, drawings and reviews, thus building an even deeper relationship with the fans.

The positive effect of Lush’s personal approach is evident in the numbers. We used Skyttle Facebook Analytics to compare the brands’ Facebook pages in terms of user posts and “likes” between 13 August and 18 October 2010. Lush’s level of engagement leaves The Body Shop in the dust:

In the last two months, Lush has had dramaticaly more fan posts and likes. Sentiment is also noticably higher for Lush:

In terms of activity by the administrators, in the selected time frame we have 224 posts by the Lush administrators and 11 by the Body Shop administrators. It is thus clear that the Lush guys spend more time engaging with their fans online, and this tactic is paying off.

It is important to underline that the style of engagement is not a univocal concept and different audiences might need a different approach. It appears however, in the Lush-Body Shop comparison, that when the target audience is very similar, a different online approach can have a dramatic difference in terms of impact and social media engagement.

Image source: Crashworks

Original Post: http://www.marketsentinel.com/blog/2010/10/lush%E2%80%99s-social-media-strategy-beats-body-shop%E2%80%99s/

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